NFL Fans Love to Hate An Opponent and Broncos Fans Love to Hate the Raiders
As much as the Denver Broncos may not like the Seattle Seahawks right now, the feeling is nothing compared to the hate Broncos fans have for the Oakland Raiders.
The fact is, in every state there is one NFL team that stands out as the most hated team in that region and SB Nation has introduced the Sports Hate Map.
For example, Indiana hates the New England Patriots, mostly due to the bitter rivalry between the Colts and the Patriots, most of which has featured Peyton Manning against Tom Brady, and Ariziona hates the Steelers because of the Cardinals loss to Pittsburgh in the Super Bowl.
Quite often, the most hated teams are rooted in division rivalries. It's not surprising that Illinois hates the Green Bay Packers, and Wisconsin hates the Chicago Bears.
It's hard to say exactly what kinds of feelings the players have toward each other, but it's no secret that Broncos fans and Raiders fans are bitter enemies.Whether you are watching the game at Sports Authority Field in Denver, or in Oakland you will see a rather large contingent of opposing fans, adorned in their teams' colors.
Some of the feelings go all the way back to the 1970s when the Raiders' hard-nosed style of play gave them a reputation of playing dirty. Beyond that it has a lot to do with success on the football field - or lack of it.
Since 1970 the Broncos have 13 AFC West Division titles,while the Raiders have 12. In that same period, the Broncos have made 20 playoff appearances, the Raiders 18. The Broncos in their history have 7 Super Bowl appearances with two wins, while the Raiders have played in the big game 5 times and have won in three times. (Including once as the Los Angeles Raiders.)
If you take out a stretch of 14 straight wins by the Raiders from 1965-1971, the Broncos have a slight edge in head-to-head games with the Raiders..... 47-46-2.
While fans will certainly be keying on a September 21st match-up with Seattle, the two dates circled on the calendar are November 9th when Denver travels to Oakland, and the season finale on December 28th when the Broncos close out the regular season at home against the Raiders.
No matter what else happens during the season, the Broncos have to beat the Raiders!